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Offense on display in Red-White game
Arkansas forward Alandise Harris, center, drives to the basket past forward Jacorey Williams, right, and forward Coty Clarke during the second half of play in the Red-White game Sunday, Oct. 27, 2013, in Bud Walton Arena in Fayetteville.
FAYETTEVILLE Faced with questions about its ability to replace its leading scorers from a year ago, the 2013-14 Razorback basketball team gave its response Sunday at the annual Red-White Game in front of an estimated crowd of 3,500.
Jacorey Williams scored 21 points and Michael Qualls scored 20 to lead the White to a 112-102 win over the Red. The White spread their points out, allowing six players to score in double figures.
The Red team, led by Alandise Harris' 26 points and 9 rebounds, bunched their scoring between Harris, Rashad Madden (24 points), Fred Gulley (24), and Bobby Portis (18).
The teams combined to shoot 56 percent from the field and 40 percent from from beyond the 3-point arc (19 of 47).
After seeing the staring lineups, many believed the Red's large height advantage would allow it to dominate the paint. Although the Red team out-rebounded the White 41-26, including 17 offensive rebounds, the White team had big performances from Williams and fellow forward Coty Clarke (15 points, game-high 10 rebounds), along with a deep-ball explosion from Anthlon Bell (19 points, 5 of 9 from beyond the arc).
The White won the turnover battle (18-11), shot a higher percentage at the line (78 percent to 63 percent) and had more assists (24 to 17).
The Red team raced out to a 7-0 lead less than three minutes into the game thanks to early 3-pointers by Madden and Harris, but the White team came storming back as Bell began to heat up. Between the midway point of the first half and early in the second half, Bell hit 5 of 6 3-point attempts.
The White led 51-41 at halftime and Bell was the leading scorer with 14. In the second half, veterans Clarke, Mardracus Wade, and Rickey Scott carried the scoring.
The White pushed its biggest lead to 73-53 with 15:22 to play before Fred Gulley began to heat up for the Red. Much like Bell, Gulley hit 5 of 6 from downtown during his second-half hot streak. The Red pulled within 75-69 but would get no closer.
Razorbacks fans got their first good looks at freshmen Portis (18 points, 5 rebounds), Moses Kingsley (6 points, 8 rebounds, 2 blocks), and Manuale Watkins (4 points, 3 rebounds), along with the now-eligible Harris, who was an all-Conference USA performer at Houston in 2012.
Portis showed versatility, connecting on a three-pointer but also grabbing four offensive rebounds and showing impressive touch around the basket. Kingsley had a game-high 5 offensive rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 blocked shots. He had an opportunity for more points but failed to make any of his four free throw attempts.
After the game, head coach Mike Anderson said that he knew scoring would not be the problem, but the defense would be. In addition to working on defense, the Hogs still need to find more shooters.
Anderson said he was very impressed with Gulley and Bell, who combined to hit 10 of 15 from 3-point range. However, the rest of the players were just 9 of 32 (28 percent) on 3-point attempts, although eight different players made at least one outside shot.
Everyone who played scored with the exception of senior Kikko Haydar, who played 21 minutes and missed on all three of his field goal attempts, although he did record a pair of assists and a steal.
The Razorbacks open the exhibition season Friday night with a game against Missouri Southern. The regular season starts Nov. 8 against SIU-Edwardsville.